In the shadow of Sandy Hook I think men (and their women) need to think again of how they raise their boys to be men. The “Warrior” archetype is a strong masculine timeless energy in men of all cultures. We see it constantly in our movies and novels in a thousand guises. It needs respectful positive recognition, direction, protection, nurture, expression, validation, and most of all, purpose .. best connected to something larger than ourselves. Commonly in the USA we honor it in a uniform; right now we lament and decry it in an elementary school awash in kid’s blood.
Raise your sons well by loving their masculine souls in positive ways with age-appropriate lessons, rites, learning, even the positive role of anger/ righteous indignation. Be ye mentors to all our boys (and girls too who can learn to appreciate, love, and foster the ‘Warrior’ in males of all ages.). Lost, pathetic and alone the ‘Warrior’ becomes a path to self-destruction. It opens it maw and our boys fall down it into it, into the the Pit, the Abyss. On the other hand, the Warrior, properly introduced, understood and cultivated, adds itself to the best of masculine universal archetypes, along with King, Magician, and Lover. It can lead boys into become real heroes, unto themselves and our society.
As a purposeful gift I spoke clearly of these things at Xmas when I was with my 3 adult sons, one adult daughter and her two sons, ages 5 & 8, my grandsons. “Be ye gentle as doves, wise as serpents,” means do the Good and resist the Evil; make peace and friendship but know how to defend your goodness, space and boundaries, as men and as women. This is the dialogue we need to have in light of Sandy Hook – how each day we family members and citizens may have to fight for what is right and righteous, and/or claim our rights to protect what is our freedom, dignity, and worthiness.
Now load that argument with a firearm – the symbol and instrument of power that it is, making any one of us, you and I, potentially an absolute power over another’s vulnerability in any way we choose. That’s what guns do. They stop people, sometimes, often, fatally. Right?
But it is said, “It’s not guns that kill people.” I say it’s the depression turned into rage of a son (or even a daughter) who is seriously lost and seeking the way of the Masculine energy in their lives, the ‘Warrior’ part of our psyches/souls. Look at the series of murderous attacks ever since John Lennon and Columbine and Gabby Gifford, Aurora and now Connecticut, even 9/11 where planes became missiles for men who made themselves symbols to act out their powerlessness in supreme acts of power, thinking destruction that was their salvation.
The masculinity of males is meant for protection, not attack, strength not desperation, focus not aimlessness, virtue not shame and blame, order not chaos, initiative not isolation, tools over weapons, intellectual depth versus pointless games, brotherhood not an emptiness, solidarity not rampage, … I could go on and on. Save the lost; retrieve the aimless, protect those who rage before they go off; name the Darkness when you see it and seek to DO something to waylay it.
Where do you see the masculine in your life that is positive, worthy of acknowledgment and or admiration, worthy of emulation and role modeling? endorse it! Name it! Support it! For our sons and daughters sake! Know what the Feminine and Masculine energy is about in your life. Acquaint yourself with it, study it, and seek your own ways to embrace and nurture it positively. It can be part of your self-transformation, and a way to better deal with tragedies n our modern world.